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Few questions about new puppy

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 12:25 PM
Hi! I am a first time dog owner with an 8 week old Golden Retriever puppy. For the most part...she's great! She sleeps through the night (about 8 hours) and we have yet to have an accident inside. I am home for 2 weeks...so I am able to get her outside a lot. I will be going back to work though, so I made a little "pen" out of boxes and have her crate in the pen. I do have a few questions and am looking for some suggestions!
1) She is now starting to chew the newspaper in the bottom of her pen as well as the cardboard boxes. Should I be looking to get one of those exercise pens and, if so, can anyone recommend one?
2) We go for little walks in our neighbourhood. She is getting good at adapting to the leash but occasionally she bites the leash and starts to play 'tug of war". I know that this isn't good to encourage...so what do I do??
3) She also wants to eat EVERYTHING during our walks. I feel like all I am doing is saying "No" and taking whatever out of her mouth (grass, sticks, rocks...). I am starting to feel like all I do when we walk is say "No". Is this just going to make her dislike walking?
4) We are working on "sitting" and she's doing well. She's starting to jump on the couch and we want to discourage this. Should I let her stay up there and ignore her or tell her "off"?
5) Lastly, I initally was just offering water when we went outside. Someone suggested I should put her water in the pen. Now there are occasionally water puddles in the pen as I think this has become a new game!

Sorry for the length of the post! As you can see...I am TOTALLY new at this and want to make sure I don't encourage any bad habits! I'd appreciate any help!

Beaglemom
August 19th, 2005, 01:32 PM
Welcome and congratulations on your new baby! Please post pictures, everyone here loves to see pictures!

When you return to work, you should have someone come home and take the puppy out for a potty break, give her some food and a little play session.

Should I be looking to get one of those exercise pens
Yes. The puppy will eventually be able to get out of the enclosure you have made with boxes. The metal exercise pen is the best way to keep her in a secure limited space where she can stay out of trouble and harms way. Also, be sure to place it somewhere that is easily cleaned up should she have a potty accident. Trust me, it will happen!

She's starting to jump on the couch and we want to discourage this. Should I let her stay up there and ignore her or tell her "off"?
If you don't want her on the couch, don't let her. Put her on the floor and say "off" or anyother command that you want her to obey. If you allow her to do this now, she will always do it, even as an adult. It is harder to train a dog to stop doing a behaviour than to teach it the right way from the beginning.

I would suggest you take her to a puppy class. This will help you get started on her training and will help immensely with her socialization, which is extremely important.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 01:40 PM
Thanks for your suggestions! She isn't getting up entirely on the couch...just her front paws. I am trying to tell her "off" and then distract her with one of her toys and praise her when she takes it. Or...I tell her "off" and praise her if she happens to sit or lie quietly.

As for the puppy class...we are already registered! However, it doesn't start for another 3 weeks so I want to try and get consistent with some of these things first.

I will look into the puppy pen. I have a tarp on the floor which is covered with newspaper (the paper she loves chewing!). I'll try to keep to that.
Thanks again! I am doing this mostly on my own so it's nice to be able to ask people for help!

Trinitie
August 19th, 2005, 01:46 PM
2) We go for little walks in our neighbourhood. She is getting good at adapting to the leash but occasionally she bites the leash and starts to play 'tug of war". I know that this isn't good to encourage...so what do I do??You could tell her No, and if that doesn't work, stop walking. Stand there and make her sit. As soon as she's sitting, continue. But, remember, she's just a baby! 8 weeks old and already not scared of the leash - you don't know how good you've got it! I would be VERY careful though. She should not come in contact with any other dog, or even poo, until she's had her second set of shots. Besides, too much walking can be very bad for developing bones. You may want to limit your walks to walking around your back yard, or just a few houses and back. At least for now.
3) She also wants to eat EVERYTHING during our walks. I feel like all I am doing is saying "No" and taking whatever out of her mouth (grass, sticks, rocks...). I am starting to feel like all I do when we walk is say "No". Is this just going to make her dislike walking?Being a Retriever, she'll undoubtedly want to carry stuff in her mouth. Bring along a toy for her to carry. Or, you can get one of those rubber retrieval toys for her to carry. Either way, it'll be easier than always trying to take stuff away. But after all, that's part of puppydom!

tenderfoot
August 19th, 2005, 01:55 PM
1. When you say pen are you meaning crate? How long is she in there? She should not be in her crate long enough to have to soil it. The newspapers should not be neccessary. She is bored and a puppy is going to chew on things. I would rather she have lots of opportunites to get stimulation outside of the crate and use the crate for naps and the occassional quiet time.
2.Leash work is good so that she learns not to pull or resist the leash but she is WAY too young to be going for walks. She should only get the kind of exercise she would get playing with her litter mates in the backyard.
3. Don't go for the walks and start teachng her 'leave it' in your yard. Make sure she has lots of things to safely put her mouth on so that she can get good entertainment there.
4.Tell her 'off'. Anticipate when she looks like she's thinking about jumping up and tell her 'off'. Use your flat hand in a popping motion towards her to throw energy in her direction so she doesn't want to jump up into those hands. Pushing her off is just a game to her - puppies play rougher than your gentle push.
5. She needs access to water all day. However putting a bowl in her crate is just an inviation to play in water and make a mess. Again she shouldn't be in there that long - so if it's just for short spurts then no water needs to be in the crate. Just make sure she has access to water in the house all day - so when you take her out to potty she can come right back in a get a drink.

StaceyB
August 19th, 2005, 01:55 PM
Get the 4 ft tall x-pen. Her crate can go inside but don't line it with paper. The last thing you want to do is have her use it for a toilet. I also wouldn't leave the tarp there. A young puppy will chew anything and this could actually be dangerous. Don't make her entire enclosure a washroom. Puppy pads are a much better choice. You can get frames for them so puppy doesn't move it around. The puppy pad is plasticized on the bottom to keep urine from seeping into the pores of your floor. It is also sprayed with an attractant that smells like urine to your puppy. This will offer your puppy one acceptable place to go when you are not home. When you are home the pad comes up and you resume your training outdoors. The pad will never be down when you are home.
The pen should have inside, the crate, water(no food), you can even get a dog water bottle so it doesn't get spilt. The puppy pad and a couple of safe toys. That's it.

StaceyB
August 19th, 2005, 02:02 PM
Get the 4 ft tall x-pen. Her crate can go inside but don't line it with paper. The last thing you want to do is have her use it for a toilet. I also wouldn't leave the tarp there. A young puppy will chew anything and this could actually be dangerous. Don't make her entire enclosure a washroom. Puppy pads are a much better choice. You can get frames for them so puppy doesn't move it around. The puppy pad is plasticized on the bottom to keep urine from seeping into the pores of your floor. It is also sprayed with an attractant that smells like urine to your puppy. This will offer your puppy one acceptable place to go when you are not home. When you are home the pad comes up and you resume your training outdoors. The pad will never be down when you are home.
The pen should have inside, the crate, water(no food), you can even get a dog water bottle so it doesn't get spilt. The puppy pad and a couple of safe toys. That's it.
Get an enzymatic cleaner to clean up all accidents, urine and feces. You need to remove all scents.

Sorry, I pushed the wrong button.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 02:08 PM
Wow! This is great! A few clarifications;
-I was told to expose her to many things hence why we were going for our "walks" but I will definitely cut that out to just our backyard for now and teach the "leave it". Thanks!
-As for the "pen", it's an area of our basement that is barricaded for when we aren't home. The layout of our house is such that closing off a room isn't really an option. I will look into getting the wire pen and do as you say with the puppy pads. GREAT ideas!

You have been so helpful! I really, really appreciate it!

StaceyB
August 19th, 2005, 02:47 PM
My suggestion for the walks would be to start with a 15-20 min play session first. Then head out for a short walk in the neighbourhood. If your puppy starts to play with the leash, stop, step onto the excess portion of the leash and wait for puppy to stop. Take foot off leash and continue with a lets go. Don't use come for walking cues.
Also, don't use the word no for every type of bad behaviour. It is too confusing. No don't do that, no don't touch that, no don't go there, etc. Pick one word for each and stick to it. You can use no but use it for one thing. Examples: Jumping-(off), Barking-(enough, quiet), Touching or approaching something they can't have-(leave it), Something in mouth they can't have-(give, drop).
Don't run your puppy on hard surfaces until they are at least 18 months.

There is a bit of a catch 22. You need to socialize your puppy but at the same time you need to keep them protected from disease. Personally, I like to start bringing them to fairly safe places to begin socializing shortly after they have been given their first set of vaccinations, 2 wks. If they haven't had any they should not go or see anyone. It will need to be a decision you make. Speak to your vet about the frequency of disease cases in your area.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 03:16 PM
Thank you so, so, SO much! I really appreciate that! I felt like I was on my own with all of this! Those are great ideas and I will try to do that. Indy (my pup!) has had her first set of shots so she's got some protection. The problem is that I live on a somewhat busy street with no sidewalk. Would it be bad for me to carry her a short distance to a side-street to practice what you were saying?

Since I'll be in the car with her on my own..is there any problem to using a harness? Is a crate better?

StaceyB
August 19th, 2005, 03:25 PM
Do whatever is necessary to keep her safe. There are seatbelts that you can get for dogs but she may be too small right now to fit in one properly. You can get a harness and purchase the seatbelt hook up to attach her harness to the seatbelt. If you use a crate restrain it in some way so it doesn't move around. Whatever your choice your puppy must be restrained in a vehicle.

Beaglemom
August 19th, 2005, 03:36 PM
Just one quick note. She does need to be socialized, but as stated before be very careful with whom and where.

She has had her 1st set of shots, but is not 100% protected from disease yet. She needs to have her 2nd set, at least. Only after this 2nd set is she much more protected. Some immunity is given to them from their mother's milk (provided mother has been vaccinated). It is not certain as to exactly when these antibodies from the mother lose their effectiveness. While still in the puppy's system, they may interfere with the vaccines' immunity protection. One of the reasons why they need 3-4 sets of vaccinations when they are puppies.

Be very careful where you walk her. She can pick up diseases like parvo if she walks by an area that a parvo dog had been. I would limit her walks until your vet gives you the ok.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 03:44 PM
I can't thank you all enough! You've been so helpful! Good advice for both the car harness and waiting for the 2nd shots. I will do as you have all suggested and keep you postesd! I have also attached a photo of our little Indy! You can see why I want to do what's best for her! :)

BMDLuver
August 19th, 2005, 04:26 PM
awwww, she's absolutely adorable! Sorry no additional advice, you've had some great advice!

nymph
August 19th, 2005, 04:30 PM
OMG she's such a cutie! Congrats on a new puppy!

I had not walked my pup until he had all his 3 shots. He did get plenty of exercise either inside the house or in our backyard. We used to play mini fetches in our home, or very short training sessions.

My house is pretty open too, so we bought a big crate for Diego and blocked it off with cardboard boxes, leaving only a small space enough for him to get up, turn around and lay down. We regularly cleaned his crate with javex water (1:4). Training pads wasn't a good idea for Diego as he rarely peed right on those pads it actually created more mess, just take your puppy out more often to eliminate. Watch her like a hawk, all the time!

Getting Indy used to the leash is one of the best things you could do in puppy training, I wish I knew about this earlier. Sounds like you are doing all the right things! Congrats again on your new puppy, and enjoy it while it lasts!

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 04:36 PM
Thanks! I do have a crate for her to sleep in and to do some house-training. Half of it is blocked off while she is small. The reason for the "pen" is that we both work all day so she will be home alone for stretches at a time and I want to keep her safe. We are working on figuring out a way for someone to come at lunch and let her out for a bit. I'm willing to try anything so I'll try the puppy pads since she's eating the newspaper! :fingerscr

StaceyB
August 19th, 2005, 04:56 PM
If you are gone for longer periods of time than what your puppy can hold themselves then your puppy shouldn't be closed in a crate. A habit of eliminating in the crate is a very difficult behaviour to stop once started. The length of time that a puppy can hold themselves during the day is very different from night. This is just approximate. 2 months-(2hrs), 3-(3hrs), 4- (5-5hrs), 5-(5-6hrs), 6-up to 8hrs for daytime. Length of time at night is longer. The time though needs to be built up, if you take them out every hour they will need to go every hour.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 06:07 PM
No! I know that! That's why I have the pen (which will be replaced with a wire pen). I will just put her crate in their with the door open for her to sleep while I am gone.

TracyG
August 19th, 2005, 06:09 PM
If when I step on the excess leash...she starts to play "tug of war"....then what?? I don't want to give in but I don't want to keep that tension on the leash either

TracyG
August 21st, 2005, 09:18 AM
I just had a few more questions so if anyone has some suggestions..>I'd appreciate them!
I went to the store to get an exercise pen and the lady that worked there suggested that I just enclose her in a room in the house for when I can't be there instead since the pens are quite expensive. I realized that I could do that by using a baby gate to enclose her in a powder room off of my kitchen. I puppy proofed it (moved any cleaners, toilet paper etc..). THe problem is that her crate doesn't fit in there. Would it be a bad thing for her to be in there during the day when I am at work without her crate in there? Would that be teaching her bad habits? I got the puppy pads and will put those on the floor when I am gone.

Also, Indy does like going into her crate. Once she's in there...she's fine but I have a hard time getting her in! I feed her in there...but she'd almost rather not eat then go in! I have put her favorite toys and treats...but she sniffs the treats and ignores them and lies beside the crate instead. She's in the bathroom now that I described above and is sleeping happily on the floor. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to help her enjoy getting into her crate?

Lastly (sorry for all the questions!), I have read many articles that suggest putting her on the leash to go outside and pee. We do that but when we are out there...she wants to eat EVERYTHING (as I mentioned before). She goes charging for the object and I tell her "leave it" and give her a toy. Sometimes she goes for the toy but more often then not, she continues to try and go for wahtever the object is. I will pick her up and move her and she goes right back. My question or concern is...she pulls SO hard on her leash that I worry about her hurting herself! On the one hand, I don't want to give in and make a dominant dog but on the other hand...I don't want her to hurt herself! Should I go with a body harness? Any ideas?

Rottielover
August 21st, 2005, 12:03 PM
which breeder did you get her from I know a breeder in MTL ?

StaceyB
August 21st, 2005, 12:26 PM
She is beginning to think that washroom time is play time. Take her out at times when you believe she needs to go. She should go within the first 2-3 minutes she is out there. If she doesn't bring her in, place her into her crate w/o making her think it is for discipline. Wait 20 minutes and trry again. Keep doing this until she goes. When she does go, praise and reward. Each time it is washroom break, leash her and take her to the same spot every time. During play times, use another area. The reason for the crate is to limit the accidents inside the house.